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Using your Personal Data

Empty Homes Partnership

About this policy

The Scottish Empty Homes Partnership is funded by the Scottish Government and hosted by Shelter Scotland. We exist to encourage Scotland’s privately-owned long-term empty homes back into use. At a time of a housing emergency we know that every home matters. The partnership was first formed in 2010, after the review of the private rented sector identified that empty homes can play an important part in meeting our housing challenges.

As part of our work, we collect and process personal data about the people who interact with us. The kind of data we collect depends on how people use our services, whether that’s getting advice, supporting our campaigns, making donations, booking on training courses or volunteering.

We only collect the bare minimum we need to offer our services and do our work. We are completely committed to protecting your data and privacy and pride ourselves on taking great care to ensure it stays completely safe.

We promise we’ll never share or sell your personal data to a third-party organization for marketing, fundraising or campaigning purposes.

This notice outlines what data we collect, how we may use it, how we protect your data and your rights, and how you can exercise those rights.

References to ‘we’ or ‘us’ are to:

Shelter, the National Campaign for Homeless People Limited (including Shelter Scotland, which forms part of Shelter), company number 01038133, registered charity numbers 263710 (England and Wales) and SC002327 (Scotland), of 88 Old Street, London, EC1V 9HU, and

We regularly check this notice to make sure we’re giving you with the most up-to-date information available about how we’re processing our data. We recommend you re-read this page from time to time to make sure you’re happy with any changes that might be made.

While we’ve tried to make our privacy policy as comprehensive as possible, it doesn’t include an exhaustive list of every aspect of how we collect and use of personal information. If you need any further information or explanation though, we’re happy to help.

If you have any questions about this policy, please contact us using the details in the ‘Contact us’ section below.

This privacy policy was last updated in November 2019.

Information we collect

Depending on how you use our services, the types of information we collect from you might include:

  • your full name
  • contact details – including your postal address, telephone number(s), and email address
  • details of your case when providing you with advice or services
  • records of your correspondence and engagement with us
  • information you may enter on the Scottish Empty Homes Partnership website
  • Photographs
  • occupation
  • biographical information
  • other information you share with us

Why we collect your data

We collect and process personal data about the people who interact with us. The kind of data we collect depends on someone’s needs, and how they’re using our services. For instance, we might collect data to communicate with someone and send requested information to them, to help us administer campaigns and donations, or to improve our services.

We collect the minimum of data required to provide our services and do our work. We’re completely committed to protecting your data and privacy, and we pride ourselves on taking great care to ensure it stays completely safe.

Some of the reasons we might collect your data include:

  • to provide you with advice and support that you have requested or been referred to
  • to process personal details required for the administration of your booked training course
  • to administer services Shelter or The Scottish Empty Homes Partnership is providing to you
  • to communicate with you regarding our work
  • for our own internal administrative purposes, and to keep a record of your relationship with us
  • to manage your communication preferences
  • to conduct and gather feedback from website users to improve Shelter’s and The Scottish Empty Homes Partnership services and user experiences
  • to address and resolve complaints about Shelter, The Scottish Empty Homes Partnership and our services
  • to comply with applicable laws and regulations, and requests from statutory agencies
  • to comply with our contractual obligations to our funders

This information may be collected via:

  • any paper forms you complete
  • telephone, webchat or email conversations, or face-to-face interactions
  • digital forms completed via our website, or online surveys
  • third-party companies
  • publicly available sources
  • communication via social media

Our advice and support for Empty Homes

When you contact our Empty homes partnership regarding an empty home, we will collect some contact details from you and details about the property you are contacting us about.  With you consent we may refer your case to an empty homes officer to take the case or we may notify the local authority.  This could be a resource officer or another local authority employee who we will share you details if you consent to the data sharing.  Otherwise your details will be processed by Shelter only.  We will store the details securely on our Empty homes database.  You can choose to remain anonymous and we will hold your details in line with our retention policy for the Empty homes project.

We may contact you to discuss your case and keep you updated of our progress if you wish.  You can determine how much contact we have with you.

Professional contacts

We may collect data about professional contacts and partners with whom we work, such as our contacts at local authorities. Personal data collected in this way will be processed in accordance with data protection legislation and this policy.

We may send our professional partners information and updates about our work or conferences (primarily by email). Such contacts can opt out of receiving this information at any time.

We maintain a record of information related to local council to be able to refer empty homes case or gather information about empty properties, to enable us to undertake our aims. This will include keeping a record of contact details such as address, telephone number and email address as well as publicly available or word of mouth form members of your organizations etc.

Security of your personal data

We use appropriate technical and organizational measures and precautions to protect your personal data and to prevent the loss, misuse or alteration of your personal data.

Unfortunately, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although we will do our best to protect your personal data, we cannot guarantee the security of your data transmitted to our website. Once we have received your information, we will use strict procedures and security features to try to prevent unauthorized access.

We encourage you to review the privacy statements of websites you choose to link to from the Shelter website, so that you can understand how those sites collect, use and share your information. We are not responsible for the privacy statements, security, or other content on sites outside of the website.

Retention of your data

Whatever your relationship with us, we will only store your information for a specified amount of time, as set out in our internal data retention policy.

The length of time that data will be kept may depend on the reasons for which we are processing the data and on the law or regulations that the information falls under, such as Limitations Act., or any contractual obligation we might have – such as with government contracts or if we have a business case, such as with government reporting. For business case data, we will anonymize the data, so no individual is identifiable.

Once the retention period has expired, the information will be confidentially disposed or permanently deleted, or anonymized.

Your rights

You have many rights under data protection legislation. These include:

Right of Access

You have the right to know what information we hold about you and to ask, in writing, to see your records.

We will supply any information you ask for that we hold about you as soon as possible, but this may take up to once calendar month. We will not charge you for this other than in exceptional circumstances. You will be asked for proof of identity as the person dealing with your request may not be the staff member you have met before. We need to be sure we are only releasing your personal data to you.

This is called a data subject access, and can be done by:

emailing [email protected]

writing to the Data Protection Manager, c/o Shelter, PO Box 1477, Sheffield, South Yorkshire, S1 4YQ

Right to be informed

You have the right to be informed how your personal data will be used. This policy, as well as any additional information or notice that is provided to you either at the time you provided your details, or otherwise, is intended to provide you with this information.

Right to withdraw consent

Where we process your data based on your consent (for example, to send you marketing texts or emails), you can withdraw that consent at any time. To do this, or to discuss this right further with us, please contact us using the details in the ‘Contact us’ section below.

Right to object

You also have a right to object to us processing data where we are relying on it being within our legitimate interests to do so (for example, to send you direct marketing by post). To do this, or to discuss this right further with us, please contact us using the details in the ‘Contact us’ section below.

Right to restrict processing

In certain situations, you have the right to ask for processing of your personal data to be restricted because there is some disagreement about its accuracy or legitimate usage.

Right of erasure

In some cases, you have the right to be forgotten (i.e. to have your personal data deleted from our database). Where you have requested that we do not send you marketing materials, we will need to keep some limited information to ensure that you are not contacted in the future.

Right of rectification

If you believe our records are inaccurate, you have the right to ask for those records concerning you to be updated. To update your records, please get in touch with us using the details in the ‘Contact us’ section below.

Right to data portability

Where we are processing your personal data because you have given us your consent to do so, you have the right to request that the data is transferred from one service provider to another.


If you have any complaints about the way in which we have used your data, please get in touch with us using the details in “contact us “section below. We would be happy to help and discuss your concerns.

You are also entitled to make a complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office

Contact Us

If you have any questions about this policy, would like more information, or want to exercise any of the rights you can get in touch with us in the following ways:

[email protected]

0344 515 1941

If you interact with Shelter, the National Campaign for Homeless People Limited (including Shelter Scotland, which forms part of Shelter), or Shelter Trading Limited, and want to see how your data is processed, please see our main privacy notice at